Thursday, May 19, 2011

Eating fish in Dresden: Kastenmeirs

I am always impressed with fish in the city of Dresden...the source of fish is either the Elbe River, or to be transported from the harbour...the nearest probably Hamburg, some 500km away. But consistently, the passionate restauranters in the city impresses me with great fish. I have written about the Carousel Bistro at the Bulow Palais and I did return for a fish lunch again...and again Chef Dirk Schroer delighted me with some great fish:

But the topic of today's post is a very specialized fish restaurant in Dresden...the Kastenmeiers.

As one enters the restaurant, the pride of place is the kitchen, which is fully visible, and the aquarium on the counter above:

There is indoor sitting within the restaurant (of course! This is Saxony, where winter temperatures often dip to -10C and lots of snow), but we opted to sit outside because the weather was quite wonderful. 25C on a nice evening.

After a hard day at work reviewing the contents of my book: The Pour le Merite Collection by A. Lange & Sohne, it was time to have a nice glass of champagne before commencing dinner:

So we start with the amuse bouche:

Interesting concoction of a small river fish, I suspect smelt, battered, and deep fried. Quite nice I must say.

For the starters, I had the King Prawns in a salad:

Quite superb. The prawns, which I think were river prawns, were very large, succulent. And grilled to perfection. The salad which accompanied is also quite excellent...fresh.

We selected a local (to the region) white wine for our dinner. We seldom hear much talk about German wine other than the Reislings and Gewurtztraminer...mostly sweet German wine from the South. But in Saxony, they have been harbouring some pretty serious contenders to the Chablis and Sauvignon Blancs.

The hue of the wine is interesting...a pale shade of straw, with a blush of pink

Made from 100% Pinot Noir grape. The wine is refreshingly fruity. On the nose, an aroma of citrus, ripe apples and pears. On the palate, a bit dry, but excellent finish, and refinement. Even for a 2010 vintage, it showed great elegance, and goes very well with the prawn salad and the fish that was to come.

For the main course, I selected the Dorade...a sea bream from the Mediterranean Sea.

Roasted/grilled whole, the two fishes serves four:

photograph taken under red warming light in the kitchen

Served with a small cup of cream sauce, and a slice of lemon for acid:

For me, I prefer my fish slightly medium rare, with a slight pink at the bone, and lightly cooked so as not to destroy the delicate texture of fish meat...this dorade was delivered medium...cooked to the bone. A little too cooked for my tastes:

Notice the fish meat is already begining to flake, indicating that it is starting to break down. But that did not distract me from enjoying the fish, which was still rather excellent, in spite of that. Smooth, almost creamy texture.

We finished with some espresso and ice cream which I did not photograph.

A worthy restaurant, especially for the elegant interior and great service. For me the fish, which was their raison d'tre was ever so slightly overcooked. Don't get me wrong, I still enjoyed this fish, but I prefer the gentle hand of Dirk Schroer, whose fish was perfectly cooked. This is perhaps a matter of taste, as my German hosts loved the dorade.

Tzschirnerplatz 3-5
01067 Dresden
Telefon: +49 (0) 351/ 48 48 48 01

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